Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Awards, Scholarships, and Stuff

Well, around the world, everything is pretty crazy at the moment. But we're seeing a lot of people do the right thing and stay home and find solutions to help keep communities going without exposing people to more danger or risk. A lot of parts of government are trying to support and encourage this, and hopefully a lot of employers are being compassionate to their workers with this.

For  Triweapon Fencing, UMBC Fencing, and Fencing Institute of America Baltimore we've been working together to provide non-traditional options for our fencers to maintain their education and interest in fencing.

But fencing isn't always just about learning a sport, or about learning to support the sport through refereeing, or tournament management or armoring. Fencers are people, and the sport only has meaning when we treat the fencer as a person in tota.

This is how my coach did things, and it's how I always try to approach things.

For college fencers they are losing their National Championship in April. Locally we've lost our regional championship and I assume many other regions have as well. Seniors are losing their graduation ceremonies, and their experience of their last semester on campus. With all of these things gone it's a loss of several opportunities for athletes to be recognized for their hard work.

USA fencing is trying to figure out how things will work for Summer Nationals and the IOC just postponed the Olympics. Moving stuff like this around or losing stuff like this can feel disappointing, but it's better than the alternative and it's pretty epic that globally we can all pull together to find solutions to protect people.

But still...while we find ways to keep fencing going by sending out blogs, or videos, or giving people bouts to watch or teaching online...we can't let the community part drop either.

For my UMBC team we brought back our annual cook out last year, and this year planned to bring back the end of year awards we traditionally did with that cook out. For my youth fencers we do awards during December, and graduations and other ceremonies in August...so they might be ok. But for the college kids we'll be working to figure out how to still provide recognition.

I hope other programs do the same.

With that in mind, I am imagining USA Fencing is still doing their annual awards and scholarship programs. The deadlines for those will be coming up soon. Clubs usually post info in their clubs (we have hand outs up in our vestibule). But postings and hand outs don't help right now.

I was going to send an email out to my students, but figured it might be better to post here in case other people miss announcements because of missed practices, so everyone in the community gets the chance to be reminded that they've worked hard, we still appreciate their hard work and success, and here is the info for some of the opportunities to get recognized for it.

Currently the websites don't say the awards are postponed or suspended. So hopefully they're still running as planned. Check out the links below!


This first one recognizes your work as an athlete and acknowledges high school students who have earned or renewed a rating during the current season.

The deadline is 11:59pm May 1st 2020. You will need a school transcript.


The Absolute Fencing All Academic Team Scholarship acknowledges athletes who do well academically. Fencers can apply just for recognition, which requires a little less work, or they can also apply for a scholarship. The scholarship consideration will require a teacher recommendation letter and an essay by the fencer.

A school transcript is also required.

The deadline is 11:59pm May 1st 2020.

So check these out and get the recognition your hard work deserves.

For more updates like this, and ideas, thoughts, and items of interest for fencers, coaches and parents, follow us on Facebook and please share us with friends and team mates!

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